Baylor basketball will begin their quadrennial foreign tour trip on Thursday in Italy. The Bears will play four games in nine days against Italian teams.
Baylor announced 11 Bears will make the trip. Due to visa issues, Flo Thamba and Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatcoua will not be able to go to Italy. Both will be on the team this season. Tchatcoua will sit out as a transfer from UNLV.
Tristan Clark will play in two games. He’s recovering from knee surgery that caused him to miss almost all of Baylor’s games during conference play. The junior big man was Andy Katz’s preseason selection for the Karl Malone Award, which is given to the nation’s best power forward. Johnathan Motley won that award in 2017.
Freddie Gillespie and Matt Mayer will not play in Italy. Those two had off-season surgeries, but they should be ready to go by the start of the season.
The rest of Baylor’s team will play. I’m most excited to see how Mario Kegler shoots and to see Davion Mitchell and Macio Teague take the floor.
Baylor is ranked in the top 20 of every major preseason ranking system. And those rankings may even have the Bears underrated. This is Baylor’s most talented roster since at least 2012.